Thursday, March 17, 2016

I Listen So You Don't Have To: The Sharpshooter Show, March 1

The Hitman's show is on the docket this week
Photo Credit:
If you’re new, here’s the rundown. We listen to a handful of wrestling podcasts each week. Too many, probably, though certainly not all of them. In the interest of saving you time — in case you have the restraint to skip certain episodes — the plan is to give the bare bones of a given show and let you decide if it’s worth investing the time to hear the whole thing. There are many wrestling podcasts out there, of course, but this feature largely hews to the regular rotation we feel best fit the category of hit or miss. If we can save other folks some time, we’re happy to do so.

Show: The Sharpshooter Show
Episode: 3/1/16
Run Time: 59:28
Guest: Blade Hart

Summary: This is the debut episode of a new venture from WrestleZone Radio: The Sharpshooter Show with Bret Hart. Though Hart is the big name on the show, he is more like the permanent guest, as the show is actually hosted and conducted by Nick Hausman, quite similar to the setup of WOOOO! Nation with Ric Flair. Hausman asks him about that week's episode of RAW, which saw the beginning of Dean Ambrose and Triple H's feud. As Roman Reigns stays off TV, Bret wonders why the writers in WWE won't get out of his way and just let him get over with the fans on his own. Hausman ends the first segment by getting Hart's thoughts on Peyton Manning's retirement and recent Donald Trump happenings. The second half of the show brings in Bret's son Blade. Together, all three of them discuss and break down Bret's Ironman Match with Shawn Michaels at Wrestlemania 12. The end of the show features a quick mailbag segment, concluding with a song from Cam'ron called "Sharpshooter."

Quote of the Week: Bret, on the different crowd reactions for Ambrose and Reigns - "Dean Ambrose, he sells. He gets sympathy when he's getting kicked down and beaten up by Lesnar and different guys, there's a pang of sympathy that goes with his character where you feel for him. Unfortunately for Roman Reigns, it's really hard for the people to feel for him. They could be cutting his head off in the middle of the ring, just doesn't seem to work."

Why you should listen: We all know Bret is a very intelligent guy who thinks deeply and critically about the tiniest details in wrestling. Even if you don't agree with everything he says, he will at least make you think about the product in a way you maybe hadn't before. This first episode benefits from the goodwill generated in the wake of Bret's successful prostate surgery, and our relief in the strong likelihood that he has beaten cancer for the foreseeable future. It is a great feeling to have him still with us and doing things like giving us new behind-the-scenes details about the Ironman Match.

Why you should skip it: There is a baffling amount of promotion going on in this first episode. One sponsor is a seafood restaurant in the Baltimore area, and though they do online orders, I sure won't be ordering crab through the mail anytime soon. The other sponsor is Sharpshooter Funding, a company co-owned by Blade Hart that gives loans to small businesses. This is the only explanation for Blade even being on the show, because he speaks for a total of maybe two minutes and essentially contributes nothing, other than talking about the greatness of his company.

Final Thoughts: Bret Hart has never been the world's most charismatic talker. Father Time has also done a number on his voice, giving him a perpetual rasp that isn't exactly pleasant. Your enjoyment of this show will be highly dependent on your reverence for Bret as a performer and icon. If you love him, you'll appreciate his negative opinions on current WWE storylines and booking, and you'll hang on his every word about Wrestlemania 12. If you think Bret is an arrogant mark for himself, then you'll have sufficient proof for your case as Bret continues to believe that WWF sandbagged him prior to the Ironman Match, and also that if a wrestler is caught on two occasions loudly calling a high spot, he should be fired. The full glory of Bret Hart's wisdom and weirdness is on display in this episode, and future episodes will surely provide more of it. Hopefully, they can get some of the weak spots fixed and/or thrown out, and we can only pray that they will realize that no one wants to get fried fish delivered to their door.